Feathers everywhere?

KDOGG331

Wrangler
Premium Feather Member
12 Years
Jan 18, 2008
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So something tried to get the chickens last night. At around 4am my dad says they were squawking and freaking out. He got the BB gun and shot a few rounds out there, bounced a couple off the metal pen, etc. They calmed right down and he thought he got rid of it. He woke up a few hours later to feathers everywhere. Woke me up around 7:30 to tell me and I went and checked. All chickens are there and no injuries.

Now, a little back story.

I have a broody hen that has been sitting on the nest about 2 or 3 weeks and I finally decided to break her. Last night was her first night in the cage. Last night my brother also took the dog and I didn't think maybe he should stay until after he left. So I am convinced this is because I left her out there as bait. :(

However, she is also the most secure of all of them. I put extra fencing around the corner she's in and the run is a chain link dog kennel.

I personally think the feathers are just from them all freaking out/panicking and bouncing around the pen/probably hitting everything? But my dad doesn't think they could lose that many feathers or that the feathers could get outside.

The dog also did not seem to care at all really when he got home and normally when there is a predator he freaks out so I am at a loss...

However, he fixated on the caged chicken and would not leave it till I sprayed him with the hose, he kept going back/bugging them and I think ot triggered prey drive SO I'm thinking that is exactly what happened last night except with a predator. Cause for the record, he normally leaves them alpne, but something about a caged chicken is irresistible.

But if that's the case why didn't he seem to care or sniff like crazy?

But something was definitely out there cause they freaked out and the feathers. But what?

Here's some pictures.
 

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KDOGG331

Wrangler
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And i added these for security last night. Now i am glad i did.

Can I bring her inside or?

Now that the dog is home he should protect against any further attacks, he's very good at barking/alerting as soon as the chickens freak or often just if he smells or hears something. He will also sit and growl out the window sometimes hah

But what do you guys think happened? And what sort of predator?
 

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peepers4eva

Chirping
6 Years
Apr 1, 2013
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San Diego
We had chickens that got attacked by skunks. Often times, the skunks wouldn't harm them, but would come back after it terrorized them a bit. I would assume that It'll come back, the chickens should be fine as long as they're caged in securely
 

KDOGG331

Wrangler
Premium Feather Member
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Jan 18, 2008
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I hadn't thought about a skunk but that makes sense. We have had issues with raccoons and foxes (or one fox?) trying to get in multiple times in the past.

Do you think I should bring her in at night?
 

peepers4eva

Chirping
6 Years
Apr 1, 2013
11
4
59
San Diego
I hadn't thought about a skunk but that makes sense. We have had issues with raccoons and foxes (or one fox?) trying to get in multiple times in the past.

Do you think I should bring her in at night?
I don't think you need to bring your chickens indoors, if thats what you're asking. We just made sure our coop was secured. Skunks, raccoons, and foxes are all really sly and can fit through small spaces. It doesn't look like your chickens were harmed at all which is good. But if you let your birds roam, any stragglers might get attacked before heading in for the night.
 

KDOGG331

Wrangler
Premium Feather Member
12 Years
Jan 18, 2008
53,303
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Massachusetts
I don't think you need to bring your chickens indoors, if thats what you're asking. We just made sure our coop was secured. Skunks, raccoons, and foxes are all really sly and can fit through small spaces. It doesn't look like your chickens were harmed at all which is good. But if you let your birds roam, any stragglers might get attacked before heading in for the night.

Well, I wouldn't bring them all in, I was just wondering if I should at least bring the broody in? I don't think anything could actually get her with how well I secured her but being right in the corner of the run and on the ground, i think she is kind of bait :(
 

peepers4eva

Chirping
6 Years
Apr 1, 2013
11
4
59
San Diego
Well, I wouldn't bring them all in, I was just wondering if I should at least bring the broody in? I don't think anything could actually get her with how well I secured her but being right in the corner of the run and on the ground, i think she is kind of bait :(
We had an ameraucana a while ago and we had the same problem with her. She would be the last one in at night, and eventually, since we didn't realize what was happening, the skunks got her. Since then we've been keeping tabs on our birds, we often go out and make sure they get to bed, and if a skunk comes, we try and get it with a BB gun. I think as long as they all get to bed on time (Probably best before dark), then they'll be fine. But if it's more comforting, you can certainly bring your broody in.
 

KDOGG331

Wrangler
Premium Feather Member
12 Years
Jan 18, 2008
53,303
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Massachusetts
We had an ameraucana a while ago and we had the same problem with her. She would be the last one in at night, and eventually, since we didn't realize what was happening, the skunks got her. Since then we've been keeping tabs on our birds, we often go out and make sure they get to bed, and if a skunk comes, we try and get it with a BB gun. I think as long as they all get to bed on time (Probably best before dark), then they'll be fine. But if it's more comforting, you can certainly bring your broody in.
Sorry, I should have clarified, she is locked in a wire crate because I am trying to break her of being broody aha so she sits on the ground (well, up on some bricks) in her wire crate right in a corner of the run. So I think she's prime bait to the predators :( I did add extra fencing to that corner though but I think they will keep trying and last night was only the first night she was out there so I'm not sure I'll be able to sleep knowing she's potentially vulnerable for a few days :(

I might at least bring her in at night if not during the day

I don't let them free range every day but have been trying to more lately. Sometimes the Orpingtons stay out until it's basically dark :/
 

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